Spicy Buffalo Vegan Chicken Sandwich (with Vegan Ranch)

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Today we’re making the best Spicy Buffalo Vegan Chicken Sandwich with crispy cauliflower smothered in vegan buffalo sauce and then sandwiched between a bun with the toppings of your choice! Served with creamy avocado ranch dressing, this is a satisfying and easy gluten-free and vegan lunch.

a vegan chicken sandwich between two slices of bread

What Makes This Recipe Great

Forget fast food– this scrumptious spicy chicken sandwich is the next best thing! Made completely plant-based from start to finish, you are going to devour this recipe (with a side of fries!). It’s a super simple sandwich with big big big flavor. 

We’re making a hearty best Vegan Chicken Sandwiches with cauliflower, a vegan buffalo sauce, and avocado-based ranch-style sauce! It’s the perfect balance of spicy, creamy, herby, and tangy and it’s made with 100% plants. 

Serve it on your favorite gluten-free bread (as needed), add a little bit of juicy tomato, crunchy lettuce, and pickles if you’d like, and enjoy.

How to Make Vegan Chicken Sandwiches

To make this recipe, we’re going to follow my buffalo cauliflower recipe. Start by preparing a homemade buffalo sauce made without any added oil or butter. Whisk together sauce ingredients like hot sauce, tahini, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup for a touch of sweetness, lemon juice of acidity, and spices and herbs. Prepare cauliflower by breaking down a head into bite-sized florets.

Next, to create our “crispy chicken patty”, batter your cauliflower with a gluten-free mixture of flour, plant milk, and spices, then bake in the oven. Dunk your cauliflower into your buffalo sauce, bake again, and then you’re ready to assemble your vegan buffalo chicken sandwich. Layer your cauliflower on top of some vegan ranch (you can make your own) and any other veggies and enjoy!

This recipe makes about 2 large sandwiches if you really pack the cauliflower in, but if you end up with leftover vegan buffalo chicken bites you can always enjoy them on the side or save for later! Now, let’s get to it! 

Ingredient Notes

See more detailed ingredient amounts and the full recipe in the recipe card below. 

Buffalo “Chicken”

  • head of cauliflower: Cauliflower has a super meaty texture so it makes a perfect substitute here. 
  • gluten-free flour of choice
  • plant-based milk: I used almond milk, but feel free to use any that you have on hand. 
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • smoked paprika
  • salt and pepper

Vegan Buffalo Sauce

Avocado Ranch Sauce

  • unsweetened vegan yogurt
  • ripe avocado
  • fresh lemon juice
  • garlic
  • mustard powder
  • onion powder
  • fresh parsley
  • fresh or dried dill
  • fresh chives
  • salt and black pepper to taste

To Serve

  • gluten free bread or regular bun
  • tomatoes
  • lettuce 
  • pickles
buffalo cauliflower bites in a white bowl

Step-by-Step Instructions

Prepare your Vegan Buffalo Sauce

  1.  In a small bowl, whisk together all ingredients until smooth. Adjust spices to taste and enjoy.

Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

  1. Preheat oven to 400F while you prepare your ingredients.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour and spices until combined, and then add plant milk and whisk until smooth. The flour mixture should be thick, but still pourable.
  3. Coat each floret of cauliflower in your batter mixture and space out on your baking mat. Bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Coat each floret in buffalo sauce and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes. Cauliflower is ready when lightly crisp on the edges and golden brown.

Avocado Ranch Dressing

  1. Add yogurt, avocado, lemon juice, garlic, mustard powder, and onion powder to a food processor and blend until smooth. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
  2. Fold in fresh herbs and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Assemble Sandwich

  1. Toast gluten-free bread spread avocado ranch sauce on the bottom bun, layer buffalo cauliflower on top, and any additional ingredients like tomato and lettuce and place the top bun on top.

Best Gluten-Free Bread for Sandwiches

While the batter and the buffalo sauce used in this recipe are gluten-free, just be sure to use gluten-free bread if you need to. I recommend pre-sliced gluten-free buns or bread, but you can always turn this into a wrap or pita as well. 

Some of my favorite vegan and gluten-free bread brands include Little Northern Bakehouse, Food For Life, and Cocobakes. Related: A full list of recommended store-bought vegan and gluten-free bread options!

No matter what bread you decide to use, be sure to give it a light toast before serving and smother it with a generous layer of the avocado ranch or vegan mayo. Alternatively, you could spray a pan or skillet with a little olive oil or a pat of vegan butter to get it nice and golden.

Baking vs. Frying Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

When you’re preparing your vegan buffalo chicken bites, you can either bake them or fry them. Frying will give them more texture and flavor, but baking keeps the sandwich a little lighter overall. You can also prepare them in an air fryer for something light and crispy at the same time.

If you’re in the mood for something heartier, don’t be afraid to fry in a little hot oil, but this recipe will walk you through the steps to bake in the oven.

Secrets to Success

  • Our vegan chicken patty here is cauliflower which turns out to have an amazing texture and crunch and absorbs the sauce super well, just like a regular fried chicken sandwich. You could always swap the cauliflower out for vegan chicken patties or another vegan option if preferred. 
  • As with any sandwich, feel free to add additional toppings and ingredients as you see fit. Vegan cheese, additional veggies, a little vegan mayonnaise on the burger bun– all your call! 

Serving & Storage Tips

Serve with a side of french fries, tater tots, or sweet potato fries or a side salad and additional vegan ranch for dipping! 

This recipe is enough to make 2 vegan chicken sandwiches. If you’re only needing one at a time, I recommend storing the leftover ingredients in separate airtight containers in the fridge, reheating, and assembling when ready to eat. The cauliflower will keep for up to 3-4 days, and the vegan buffalo sauce and avocado ranch will keep for up to a week if stored properly. 

More Vegan Recipes & Lunch Ideas

If you make this recipe, be sure to let me know what you think with a star rating and comment below! Follow me on Instagram for more delicious recipes!

Spicy Buffalo Vegan Chicken Sandwich (with Vegan Ranch)

Today we’re making the best Spicy Buffalo Vegan Chicken Sandwich with crispy cauliflower smothered in vegan buffalo sauce and then sandwiched between a bun with the toppings of your choice! Served with creamy avocado ranch dressing, this is a satisfying and easy gluten-free and vegan lunch.

Ingredients 

  • 1 head of cauliflower chopped into florets
  • 1/3 cup gluten free flour of choice
  • 1 cup plant milk more as needed
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Vegan Buffalo Sauce

Avocado Ranch Sauce

  • 1 cup vegan yogurt unsweetened, unflavoured
  • 1/2-1 ripe avocado
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1-2 cloves garlic grated
  • 1/4 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 tsp fresh or dried dill
  • 1 tbsp fresh chives chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • to serve
  • gluten free bread
  • tomatoes sliced
  • lettuce

Instructions 

  • Prepare your vegan buffalo sauce
  • Whisk together all ingredients until smooth. Adjust spices to taste and enjoy.
  • Buffalo cauliflower bites
  • Preheat oven to 400F while you prepare your ingredients.
  • Whisk together flour and spices until combined, and then add plant milk and whisk until smooth. Mixture should be thick, but still pourable.
  • Coat each floret of cauliflower in your batter mixture and space out on your baking mat. Bake for 20 minutes.
  • Coat each floret in buffalo sauce and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes. Cauliflower is ready when lightly crisp on the edges.
  • Avocado ranch dressing
  • Add yogurt, avocado, lemon juice, garlic, mustard powder and onion powder to a food processor and blend until smooth. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
  • Fold in fresh herbs and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Assemble sandwich
  • Toast gluten free bread, spread avocado ranch sauce, layer buffalo cauliflower on top and any additional ingredients like tomato and lettuce.

Notes

Secrets to Success

  • Our vegan chicken patty here is cauliflower which turns out to have an amazing texture and crunch and absorbs the sauce super well, just like a regular fried chicken sandwich. You could always swap the cauliflower out for vegan chicken patties or another vegan option if preferred. 
  • As with any sandwich, feel free to add additional toppings and ingredients as you see fit. Vegan cheese, additional veggies, a little vegan mayonnaise on the burger bun– all your call! 

Serving & Storage Tips

Serve with a side of french fries, tater tots, or sweet potato fries or a side salad and additional vegan ranch for dipping! 
This recipe is enough to make 2 vegan chicken sandwiches. If you’re only needing one at a time, I recommend storing the leftover ingredients in separate airtight containers in the fridge, reheating, and assembling when ready to eat. The cauliflower will keep for up to 3-4 days, and the vegan buffalo sauce and avocado ranch will keep for up to a week if stored properly. 

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Did you make this recipe?Tag @veggiekins on Instagram and hashtag it with #veggiekins

This post may contain affiliate links.

About Remy

Hi there, I’m Remy! Welcome to Veggiekins Blog, home to nourishing vegan + gluten-free recipes and tips to live your best balanced and holistic life. I’m a human on a mission to empower you to be well and be kind to your mind, body and soul with the healing power of plants.

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